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Rediff.com  » Business » RCom worst in telcos' call drop test at Hyderabad

RCom worst in telcos' call drop test at Hyderabad

June 10, 2016 09:06 IST

The company has reportedly been in the process of shutting its CDMA business and shifting its subscribers to 2G, 3G and 4G networks. 

Reliance Communications (RCom) fared the worst in a call drop rate test conducted by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) in Hyderabad, showed the results issued by the latter.

Trai had earlier said almost all operators failed the benchmark in a test at Delhi; it was so in Hyderabad, too.

And, RCom's call drop rates were the highest - 4.8 per cent for its second-generation technology (2G) service and 5.5 per cent for the CDMA service.

The company has reportedly been in the process of shutting its CDMA business and shifting its subscribers to 2G, 3G and 4G networks.

For 4G, it has a sharing pact with Mukesh Ambani's Reliance Jio Infocomm.

The test was on May 5-7 over 300 km in Hyderabad and monitored 2G, 3G and CDMA. Only Vodafone 2G and Telenor 2G were able to keep the call drop rate at 1.5 per cent and 1.8 per cent, respectively.

Bharat Sanchar Nigam for 3G services had kept the call drop rate at 0.8 per cent, but the government-run entity did not meet the criteria for its 2G service.

Other operators who did not meet the requirements were Airtel, Aircel, Idea, Tata Teleservices and Docomo.

The Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI), lobby group of GSM service providers, said these results point to a pattern wherein drive tests are being conducted in areas with limited services. Rajan Mathews, director-general of COAI, said: “The drive test in a limited area of a city cannot be extrapolated into QoS for the entire licensed service area. It is inaccurate to say the QoS for Hyderabad is not met.”

Dismissing the allegations of COAI, Trai chairman R S Sharma said the results are clear indicator of Quality of Service (QoS) by operators.

“If we do not conduct the drive tests in the sample areas, then where do we conduct it. What the industry body is alleging (about conducting test in problem areas) is ridiculous.”

“Since the call drop test benchmarks are not being met by the telcos, that is why we have asked the dot to give us powers to impose penalties,” he added.

Last week, following the release of the Delhi test drive results by Trai, the operators alleged the test was done in problematic areas, despite the regulator knowing the challenges such as cell towers being shut down by local authorities and inaccessible sites on government and military land.

Adding: “These tests have just shown what we have been saying in the past, that there are areas with limited service. The tests have happened in areas where it is difficult to get in to put cell sites and, thus, they have limited services...Moreover, the test drive happened just after storm and floods, which had rendered almost 400 cell sites inoperable.”

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